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Peloton Rolls In


Xander and Soxy, our two remaining Rally Caps, are enjoying their pre-graduation week at 50K. They aced their adoption exam at Petsmart last weekend, and their new parents will be coming to pick them up on Friday. Last night they did their usual romping around the first floor after dinner, then sat with us to watch the last hour of Dr. Zhivago. We had to explain that the movie has lots of flashbacks.

Within an hour after uploading Martha’s entry on Sunday, we were gearing up for our next set of fosterlings. In King George County, a stray mom-cat raising her five kittens in a family’s garage failed to return last Thursday. By Friday the family realized she wasn’t coming back, so they called the KG shelter and were told how to bottle-feed the kittens. The family’s mom had to go back to work on Monday, so the KG shelter e-mailed us to see whether we could take the kittens.

We called our Homeward Trails coordinator, and she suggested that we try combining them with a mom-cat in the HT network who might still have some milk after raising four healthy 12-week-old kittens. So we grabbed a carrier and drove into DC to pick up Gigi at PetMAC, then stashed her in the bunkhouse when we got home.

Then we drove an hour south to Potomac Mills to meet the family from King George County, who came more than halfway to meet us. They handed us a box with five little gray-and-white bottle babies, and our first reaction was – yikes, these guys are tiny! They look more like one-week-olds.

But they woke up when we transferred them to our carrier, and we saw that their eyes have all opened. And they demonstrated some prodigious lung power by squawking and squealing all the way home. We transferred them to the bunkhouse nest and fed them immediately, and they all hit the bottle well.

Gigi stopped by to sniff them and did a little cursory licking… and then sauntered back out to the playground. We gave her many opportunities and kept her in the bunkhouse with the kittens overnight, but it was clear that Gigi considers her nursing responsibilities to be officially over.

Now that she’s finished being a mom, she’s ready to be someone’s stellar feline buddy – well-behaved, attractive, and very affectionate. She made an effort to socialize with our staff cats, and if we had a place to put her I would have lobbied to keep her for a few more days. But she’ll meet more potential adopters at PetMAC (where she roams free in the store), so I took her back there yesterday.

Adhering to our use of topical litter names, we’re calling this group the Peloton, since we’re hooked on TV coverage of the Tour de France. But we’re not big fans of the leading riders, so we didn’t name any kittens after individuals. Fifteen minutes of concentration left us with: Paris (the smallest kitten and the only female), Skoda (the European car company whose name is all over the course), Bobke (the nickname of goofball commentator Bob Roll), Wheels (duh), and Cowboy (no cycling reference there, but he has spots that remind us of cows.)

Observations so far: this is definitely the loudest group of bottle babies we’ve met; aside from a little eye goop, they all seem pretty healthy; Bobke’s paws seem to be up in the air more often than on the ground; lots of napping, decent appetites, some toddling around, plenty of peeing, and minimal pooping – seems like the Peloton is off to a good start.

filed by: TS



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